Earlier this week, both sides of Congress passed legislation with the intent of protecting mid-sized businesses from being subject to the community rate reforms and other mandates included in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). The Bill is now awaiting the President’s signature.
PPACA included a mandate that expanded the definition of small group to include businesses with 51-99 employees, where most states defined them as 2-50. Although most of the mandates were implemented January 1st of 2014, PPACA allowed States to continue operating under their old definition until January 1, 2016. At this time, all employers with 2-99 employees were to be considered small group employers, and thus their benefit plans subject to the massive rate reforms. It was anticipated that this mandate was going to cause many employer to rethink the offering of benefit plans to their employees in direct response to significant rate increases.
For now, we wait. Once the Bill is signed, it will be handed down to the States to decide whether they implement the mandates set forth in Healthcare Reform, or continue business as usual – and with very little time to do so with the end of 2015 coming to a fast close.
Group health insurance for small businesses
Dealing with right health insurance agent can help you find the right plan for company or business. As an employer there are many good reasons to consider group health insurance that you can offer as a benefit to your employees. If you are looking for affordable group health insurance in Angola, Auburn, Bluffton, Fort Wayne, Huntington or Kendallville, IN then the Health Insurance Shop can help. As a health insurance agent they have access to a variety of group health plans from many different carriers. They can help you find the best rates and the best plans to meet your group health requirements.
Group health insurance is a key benefit that an employer can offer to employees as an incentive. Group health insurance can cover you and your family and work out cheaper than individual health insurance. This is because this type of plan is subsidised by the employer. An employer will also get better rates on a group plan than an individual can get on his or her own. Premiums are also paid on a pre-tax basis resulting in significant tax breaks.
Small employers are not legally required to offer group health insurance but many choose to offer such plans as it helps small business attract top employees and also helps to reduce staff turnover. Group health schemes for small businesses have to conform to certain requirements as laid down in the Affordable Care Act.
Small group health plans are categorised according metal levels such as platinum, gold, silver and bronze. In this case platinum will be the strongest plan and bronze will have the least benefits. Platinum plans are more expensive but offer greater coverage and pays the highest proportion of medical costs. COBRA coverage also entitles a worker to retain group health benefits in the event of job loss or job change.